In a Nutshell: How to deliver presentations that captivate your audience instead of putting them to sleep.
Real World: Check out the video of my final class project presentation implementing the techniques covered in the book.
Best Features: Step-by-step instructions with real-world examples. Technique is as easy as 1,2,3...Great Opening, Streamlined Content, and Great Closing.
Mood: Mix of motivational speaking + business casual.
Reason for Reading: Required book for my class at UCLA, "New Business Development - Pitching the Perfect Presentation."
Caution: The Kindle version I purchased was jumbled due to some sort of formatting error. The author was kind enough to give me a free hardcopy replacement.
The center itself is housed in an old school building along with several non-profit agencies. Finding the center involved wandering down eerie, abandoned hallways lined with metal lockers. Things started to look up once I found the right room. A nice woman welcomed me and escorted me over to the workstation slated for grant research, where she gave me a quick tutorial on how to use the Foundation Center database.
The most entertaining part of the experience was the ancient computer, reminiscent of the one I used in middle school in the mid-90s. The version of Internet Explorer was so outdated, Google couldn't open my email and warned me that I needed to "upgade to a modern browser" to gain functionality.
Step 2 Outcomes - 850 Potential Foundations
I stared my search by using two filters - geographic focus and field of interest. The filters allow you to select from pre-populated lists of states and broad topics like "education." Unfortunately, there weren't categories for "computers," "high-tech," or "mapping," which better describe the project I want to fund.
I found ~ 850 potential foundations using the first set of filters:
I skimmed the vast list of search results and found 24 foundations worth a closer look. I was able to email detailed reports of these foundations to myself (after I upgraded the browser). The most interesting foundations I found were the Dr. Seuss Foundation and the Association of American Geographers (AAG), a professional association I'm a member of. I didn't realize AAG awarded almost a half million dollars in grants in 2011!
Step 3 Outcomes - Select 24 Foundations for Further Screening
I reviewed the Foundation Center reports for 24 foundations, and ranked them based on alignment with subject area, geographic preference, type of financial need, typical dollar range of awards, personal relationships, and past history of giving to my organization.
Using the final set of filters, I created a list of 6 candidate foundations that match the following criteria:
Step 4 - The Winners Are...
Previous stages of the specific research project I want to fund were provided by the National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health, Department of Health and Human Services, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences. These organizations are also high priorities for potential funding.
* I conducted this research for an assignment in Successful Grant Proposals, a class I'm taking at the University of California - Los Angeles (UCLA) - Extension School.
As promised, I dove back into school today and began the first assignment in my UCLA class, "Successful Grant Proposals." The goals of the first assignment were to choose a topic and identify several potential funding sources using The Foundation Center website.
That seemed easy enough. I already had a topic - modeling global ultra-violet radiation exposure using GIS, courtesy of a colleague at the University of Southern California. Part 1 - check!
Bummer! It looks like I'm off to the library... just like in middle school. I wonder if they still have those dusty card catalogs?
“Although no one can go back and make a brand new start, anyone can start from now and make a brand new ending.”
I began my online learning journey in January with the best of intentions. I would study every day and keep up with all of my classes. My mind would swirl with new ideas and I'd smile with the satisfaction that comes from investing in myself. I made some great progress by finishing three classes at Cornell, two at UCLA, and the first few weeks of classes at Harvard and the University of Massachusetts. And then reality interfered...
Expedition to Alaska
Dream Job Interview
When I returned home, I couldn't wait to catch up in all of my classes...until I saw an email from Coursera that I was selected for an interview for a Course Operations Specialist position! I was giddy with excitement! Class would have to wait.
I needed to prepare for the meeting that could lead to my dream job - contributing to educational resources that could benefit countess students. I soared past the first interview - a rigorous, a one-hour timed task in which I had to critique a sample course proposal for a MOOC (Massive Open Online Course) from a "real" professor and write a best practices guide for translating traditional courses into MOOCs.
Geo Job Search
Rachel, you really need to catch on your classes!
However, I couldn't skimp on my geo-job search. I jumped on the networking opportunities provided by attending the L.A. GeoSpatial Summit and presenting at the Association of American Geographers Annual Meeting and the CalGIS Conference. April 16th was particularly interesting as I was invited to speak in two cities on the same day. Miraculously, I was able to present at two events at CalGIS in Long Beach in the morning and then scurry down to San Diego in time to speak at the World Resources SIM Center that night.
Oh yeah...and there was the design and launch of my new magazine - GeoPivot, creating an interactive map of my speaking engagements (see below), and creating a flippable GIS Portfolio to highlight my skills.
Fast forward to today, where I FINALLY have some free time to dive back into my blog. Stay tuned for more details as I pick up where I left off on my online learning journey.